YP – B3: QtnoWLM – Chapter 18 (Chapter 115)

179 Days Until Gloom And the Uncertain End   

“A problem?” Uly asked over the headset trying to  keep calm of his emotions. Evester opened his eyes as the other breaths around him went silent. They too were awake. Heia then sat upright in a panic. Uly was the second to sit up.

“There are Stars.” Karla answered. “Magicians. Threes, probably, because they have not been able to notice us yet.”

Stars? What were Stars doing in the hideout? Evester shot a look to Zeydar, who sat with his head rolled from side to side as he tried to keep himself awake. 

“Crass says we should be okay, but you need to be more careful.” Karla continued.

“What does it look like in there?” Kim was the first one other than Uly to respond.

“Lots of soldiers. Lots of stars. Lots of…” Karla went silent and then after a moment spoke hurried. “We have to go. We’ll leave markers for where we went.”

Then Karla’s voice cut off and Uly turned to Evester. His words were directed to everyone in the tent, but he was saying it to Evester on purpose: Heiphillia. “Keep to the plan.”

“She’s in danger!” Heiphillia snapped back.

“She picked this.” Uly shook his head. Evester did agree that it was a bit odd that they were holding responsibility to a teenager who didn’t know better, however it would be hypocritical for him to say anything. For EverDanger was just that way and they’d held themselves accountable at Karla’s age. Albeit their situation was nothing like this one.

“But!” Heia was at a loss of words. “What if she’s in more danger that we are assuming?”

“Probably.” Shawn answered, revealing that he too was awake despite having his eyes closed. “It’s probably a hellscape in there. It was why Evester wanted to avoid it.” He was blaming her for it. There was no turning back not now and he wanted her to know that this was her decision. Evester didn’t agree, as they had voted on it, and Shawn’s own recommendation was ignored.

“Team two prepare to go.” Uly declared resulting in Kim sitting up next to Evester and looking to Hephillia. She then stood and helped Kony get ready..

As the group prepared to send off the second group, Evester spoke to Heiphillia. “It will be okay. Crass is a good man. He’ll protect her.”

“I’m not worried.” Heiphillia glared at Evester. “If she gets hurt its not his fault. It’s mine.”

“We will get out of this.” And perhaps dismantle the Unwanted Guests. “You are a part of EverDanger now.”

The words made her roll her eyes, but he knew they held weight. She, Karla, Trace, Robee, Kony, and Kori were a part of EverDanger. As a part of EverDanger, they would be protected thoroughly to the best of each member’s abilities. The team looked out for each other, and it was then that Evester knew he made a good choice in bringing EverDanger with them. Their survival was going to be thanks to this dynamic if they made it. How would he, Heiphillia, and Zeydar survived on their own otherwise?

As the others moved, Evester made his way to Zeydar who leaned against the exit of the tent, eyes closed, radio off, focused on something else. He was started as Evester approached him.

“Is everything okay?” Zeydar asked as Evester approached, making it clear that he’d miss the entire conversation that had gone on around him.

“Stars inside.”

“Ah. That’s what I felt.” Zeydar looked into Evester’s eyes, bags like black rims under his eyes.

Evester knelt down. “How are you?”

“Like. Death.” Zeydar glared at him with a hostility that stemmed from being bothered rather than being asked. “But its not like anyone really cares.”

Evester wasn’t entirely sure what Zeydar was trying to do. “You are the one who wanted to detox slowly.”

“Its the best for everyone. Which is why no one should care.” Zeydar answered making little sense to Evester. 

“You need to sleep.”

“Can my shields go down?”

“For at least a few hours after the next team leaves.”

“Then I’ll sleep.” Or he’d meditate as he had been for the last few days. Evester wasn’t sure what sort of sleep Zeydar was getting. Evester was certain that out of everyone, Zeydar was having the hardest time adapting. The journey was hitting him hard. He’d grown up in a Tower his whole life, catered to at all points. Having to cook, to survive, constantly on the edge it was against everything he knew. He had not once complained about anything they had to do, despite making faces about it to himself, but Evester knew that he was the most uncomfortable out of them. And plus what he was going through and what they were asking him to do? Evester was surprised he hadn’t snapped already.

“Sleep now. I’ll wake you when we need the shield again.”

“I thought you said after the next team leaves.”

At that moment Uly gave the signal, over headset for the second team to leave and Evester smiled at Zeydar. He did not look back to say goodbye to Shawn and Kony. Instead he made Zeydar focus on him as he spoke. “They have left. It’s time for you to sleep.”

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pt 2

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